On the 11th of February 2023, the History Trust of South Australia Migration Museum joined forces with the Arabic Language and Culture Association of South Australia (ALCASA) to present the official launch of the Ahlan wa Sahlan (welcome): Hospitality in Arabic Culture exhibition. The event was part of the Community Connections program, supported by the Multicultural Communities of SA (MCCSA) and the exhibition is running from the 4th of February to the 31st of July 2023, at the Migration Museum.
Over 200 people, including exhibitors, distinguished guests, and the wider community attended the launch event. The harmonious evening showcased a series of sentimental objects, artifacts, artworks, culinary items, and historical relics which all had deep cultural roots intertwined with nostalgic stories associated with Arabic hospitality. Alongside the visual cultural displays, guests further indulged in their senses with the traditional ambiance projected from the “dabke” dance from the talented Torah Arts Group led by Rania Daou and Lina Ashkar-Nasr. These insightful performances were then followed by live music played by the extraordinary violinist Aboud Abaza, and of course; guests relished throughout the evening by getting a taste of Arabic hospitality from our impeccable vendors, including Jasmine Al Sham and Sassi Ice Cream – Shukran kteer (thanks so much)!
All in all, the exhibition not only provided guests with live entertainment but also promoted community connections through the awareness of intercultural understanding and the sense of belonging associated with traditional cultures displaying Arabic hospitality.
Special thanks to the History Trust of South Australia Migration Museum and ALCASA for hosting a successful event. We also appreciate the support from the wonderful community groups: The Ahwazian community in Australia, the Australian Lebanese Association, The Sudanese Cultural and Social Society of South Australia, and Glimmer of Hope. Last not but not least, our gratitude extends further to the exhibitors for sharing their sentimental stories, and the wider community for delving into an intercultural experience, which we are sure will be their story about Arabic hospitality to share in future.